Tuesday, March 10, 2015

St. Valentine of Savannah

This Valentine's Day, my husband and I got to do something we never get to do... We got to go away for a weekend without children!  Because we live far from friends and family, the opportunity to leave our children is just not something we have very often.  Our new, and now dear friend, Sharon, graciously offered to keep our children alive for the weekend, and we ran away fast before she could change her mind. 

There were a few things on the agenda: a couple's massage offered at the hotel spa, a haunted trolley tour, fancy dinner at The Olde Pink House, and antique shopping/browsing.  Neither of us had been to Savannah before, so it was truly an adventure (like an old-person adventure, not a I-had-to-saw-off-my-own-arm-to-escape-a-rock-climbing-accident adventure.)  The massage was nice, but sort of weird.  I get them regularly, but my husband has never had one.  It was a strange thing to be in a room with him while some other chick gave him a massage.  That just wasn't really as relaxing as I had imagined it.  The haunted trolley tour was very interesting just as a sort of historical info tour, but I had really hoped to be scared witless. It was cute... not soul-scarring.

I told my husband to make a scared face.  This was the best he could do.

Anyways, as soon as our plans for this weekend had finalized, I immediately knew I needed to make some dresses.  The fancy dinner required a fancy dress.  Valentine's Day requires that you wear something red and flirty.  I did not want those to be the same dress, so in the rules I make up in my head, I needed two dresses.  First, I wanted to make a nice, comfy dress for being tourist-y in.  I've posted about Colette Moneta before, and it has really become a tried-and-true pattern for me.  Its a quick cut and sew... uninterrupted, I can start-to-finish one in about 3 hours (Uninterrupted... hahahahaha.)  For this one, however, I wanted to do something a little different.  I wanted a more fitted and flirty look, but with the same comfort level.  I decided to swap out the skirt with a 3/4 circle skirt.  

I am ever so in love with the result.  The fabric was a red floral ponte knit I ordered from Joann's online.  It is very comfortable (I don't need shapewear) but I think it still looks sophisticated.   The 3/4 circle skirt was the perfect amount of flare without being excessive.  I would love to give you a link to great instructions to measure your own 3/4 circle skirt, but I cant. Everything I looked up involved non-cream pi, so I pretty much winged it.  I used my trusty circle skirt instructions, and instead of cutting the full circle, I chopped it off at what appeared to be 3/4.  If you decide to be as imprecise and careless as I, make sure you don't remove any of the waist measurement.  You will need to remove the piece in a pie shape. See my crude illustration below...

This leaves the proper measurement for your waist, but removes the bulk in the flare of the skirt.

Now, for the fancy dinner dress, I decided to go with a LBD of sorts.  I picked up a black textured satin with a little body (to the fabric, I mean.  There were no little bodies for sale that day, or I would have picked one up fo' sho.) Again, I went back to a pattern I have shown you before, but made some adjustments.  This was a Retro Butterick, 5748.  
When I made this before, I realized it needed a few changes to really fit well.
I apologize for the poor photo quality here... it was dark and I was freezing.  I think you can see that this version fits much better than my previous one (see The Book Club dress.)  I adjusted the bust darts to point in a more flattering direction, I added about 2 inches in the back to cover up my bra properly, and for this one I made a subtle sweetheart neckline. It turned out beautifully.  I added a pretty full red chiffon petticoat underneath for full swish, and some polka dot pumps with red bows.  I was hit on by no less than 3 older gentlemen while waiting for my husband to bring around the car.  Normally I would be annoyed, but the older man game is way more flattering than young dudes.  One guy asked if I knew who Minnie Ripperton was... and naturally I do.  Evidently I favored her this evening... score one for me!  And my "regular" "readers" will be happy to note that I also IRONED this dress.  I'm a domestic goddess.

If you ever get the chance to go to Savannah, do not hesitate.  It was beautiful and interesting.  My very favorite portion of the trip had to be our dinner at The Olde Pink House.  It was the best meal of my life!  I will leave you with a few photos of our time there. Hope you all had a lovely Valentine's Day!